Comparison of various methods of detection of different forms of dengue virus type 2 RNA in cultured cells

H. S. Liu, Y. L. Lin, C. C. Chen

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16 Citations (Scopus)


In this report, the sensitivity of various methods of detection of dengue virus type 2 (DEN-2) sense, antisense, replicative intermediate (RI) and replicative form (RF) RNAs in infected mosquito Aedes pseudoscutellaris AP-61 and mammalian baby hamster kidney BHK-21 cells is compared. LiCl precipitation was used for separation of viral RF RNA from RI RNA. Our results show that reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) followed by Southern blot analysis and slot blot hybridisation of LiCl-fractionated RNA were the most sensitive methods of detection of viral RNA and determination of its single-stranded form. Northern blot analysis was the least sensitive method of detection of any form of viral RNA. Using slot blot hybridisation of LiCl-precipitated RNA, viral RI RNA containing de novo synthesised negative strand viral RNA was first detected 30 mins after virus inoculation in both cell lines. This is the earliest time of detection of DEN viral RNA synthesis in host cells so far reported. However, RF RNA could not be detected until 24 hrs post infection (p.i.) in AP-61 and 2 days p.i. in BHK-21 cells, respectively. The sequential order of individual forms of viral RNA detected in the infected cells was RI, RF and genomic RNAs. Viral RNA was detected in AP-61 cells always earlier than in BHK-21 cells. Moreover, the level of viral RNA in AP-61 cells was higher than that in BHK-21 cells, suggesting that the virus replicated more actively in AP-61 cells. In conclusion, the LiCl separation of viral RNA followed by slot blot hybridisation was found to be the most sensitive and reliable method of detection of DEN virus RI, RF and genomic RNAs in the infected cells. Moreover, this method can be applied to determine the replication status of any single-stranded RNA virus in the host.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-324
Number of pages8
JournalActa Virologica
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Dec 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

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